Murata Manufacturing announced it is investing $45 million in the purchase of two factory buildings and the construction of a third to manufacture micro electro mechanical systems (MEMS) sensors in Finland.
The Kyoto-based company had been leasing the two buildings it purchased and expects to complete the adjacent 172,000-square-foot factory in Vantaa, Finland, by the end of 2019. MEMS sensors are used in pacemakers, car safety systems and industrial applications.
Murata cited the growing worldwide demand for MEMS sensors as its reason for ramping up production. The company employs 1,000 people in Finland and expects to add 150 to 200 jobs.
“The market for advanced driver-assistance systems, self-directed cars, healthcare, and other emerging technologies are expected to be significant growth drivers,” said Yuichiro Hayata, managing director for Murata Electronics Oy, in a prepared statement. “MEMS sensors are critical solutions for these applications and deliver proven measurement accuracy and stability in a variety of conditions.”
Murata acquired the Finnish company VTI Technologies – today known as Murata Electronics Oy – in 2012. It is the only factory of Murata which manufactures MEMS sensors outside of Japan, and has experienced tremendous growth over the last 10 years, according to the company. The site in Finland also hosts R&D space and one of the biggest clean room facilities in the country.
“With the construction of this new production building, we will significantly increase our MEMS sensors production capacity. Moreover, by responding to the strong demand of gyro sensors, accelerometers, and combo sensors in the automotive, industry and healthcare fields, this will strengthen our business base in the automotive market, industrial equipment and medical devices market, while contributing to the economy and employment of Finland,” added Makoto Kawashima, director of the sensor product division of Murata Manufacturing.